Thanks to Chris and her Deep Freeze Summer Challenge, I’ve been inspired to dig around the deep, dark recesses of my freezer for ingredients to build dinner around. All that money sitting in my freezer, ignored (why hello there, long-forgotten overpriced veal shanks). It’s a good thing, too, because I’ve been so slammin’ busy with work that I haven’t had any time to grocery shop. So if it’s not in the freezer, pantry, or fridge, it ain’t going in dinner.
I found lots of goodies but the puff pastry beat everything out. I can’t remember when I bought it or why and I didn’t bother looking for an expiration date. It was less than 10 minutes from freezer to the oven (I quick-thawed the pastry in the microwave) and I was sitting in front of the TV with dinner less than 30 minutes after closing the freezer door.
Quick Asparagus Tart
1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
12 stalks asparagus, washed and trimmed
1/8 cup olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
pinch of red pepper flake
Parmiggiano-Reggiano, freshly grated (optional)
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cut puff pastry in half and place on a lined baking sheet. Heat oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes over medium heat until fragrant – about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and brush the puff pastry sheets with the olive oil. Arrange asparagus stalks on the pastry and brush with olive oil. Scatter garlic and pepper pieces over the pastry and bake for about 13 minutes, until dough is golden brown and done.
Remove from oven and sprinkle with cheese, if using. If not, lightly salt and enjoy!
Yields 2 tarts.
* I didn’t use salt and cheese – the cheese adds a bit of saltiness on its own.